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Man who provided drugs in overdose death in Park County sentenced to 12 years in prison

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Posted at 3:56 PM, Feb 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-24 18:34:12-05

An Arizona man who admitting providing methamphetamine and heroin to a friend, who overdosed and died from the drugs, was sentenced today to 12 years in prison and to three years of supervised release, Acting U.S. Attorney Leif Johnson said.

According to court documents, Brandon Thomas Houdashelt, 33, of Goodyear, Arizona, pleaded guilty on Sept. 29, 2020, to possession with intent to distribute controlled substances.

According to court documents filed by the prosecution, on Nov. 3, 2018, Houdashelt was at the residence of two of his friends in Park County. Houdashelt had brought with him methamphetamine and heroin. He loaded a syringe with a combination of methamphetamine and heroin for himself and his two friends. One of his friends overdosed and died from the drugs. Law enforcement and medical personnel responded to the residence. An investigation determined that Houdashelt had been distributing methamphetamine and heroin to multiple people in the days between Nov. 1, 2018, and Nov. 4, 2018. Multiple drug users stated that Houdashelt was a drug dealer and described seeing Houdashelt in that time frame with a backpack containing methamphetamine and heroin, and to being provided with drugs by Houdashelt.

U.S. District Judge Susan P. Watters presided. Houdashelt was detained. Assistant U.S. Attorney Tom Godfrey prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a U.S. Department of Justice initiative to reduce violent crime. According to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports, violent crime in Montana increased by 48% from 2013 to 2019. Through PSN, federal, tribal, state and local law enforcement partners in Montana focus on violent crime driven by methamphetamine trafficking, armed robbers, firearms offenses and violent offenders with outstanding warrants.